Wednesday, January 30, 2013

So Here's What Happened

Last night I got derailed early in the morning while trying to post - even though I had once again missed the 12:00am deadline. In case you are keeping track, here's what happened.

The problem is attributable to technology mostly. It's been longer than I can remember since I turned on my desktop on a regular basis. My power PC has basically been relegated to deep storage for photos and music and the place I sync my iOS devices. Evenings in our home usually see computing happening on laptops or even more often on tablets.

Tablets are the best. One of the coolest things about them is that they power up like phones. No waiting for the thing to boot. You slide off the cover and there it is. Even the laptops take a couple of minutes to cycle through their startup sequence. So if I have a small task to do online, rather than boot up the tower or even the laptop I normally just grab the tablet.

There was an original problem with the tablet when it came to blogging. The touchscreen keyboard wasn't the greatest option for typing out anything more than a couple of lines. But somewhere along the way I solved that with an external bluetooth keyboard.

So then I had a quick booting device with a good way to type longer items.

Interestingly, as it turns out, when using the site there were some small conflicts when using the iOS device. So even with a keyboard, blogging was not really possible. Eventually I found the Blogsy app, and then the Blogger iOS app some time later.

This brings us to last night. Having missed the deadline I didn't want to wait for a device to boot. I had actually planned what the post was going to be writing. It had several photos which I had taken earlier in the day. I was actually a little stoked because through various cloud application setups I was going to be able to blog on the tablet using photos I took with my phone earlier without ever having to download the phone. Seamless things like that are really cool.

I may not know how to use the thing, but it appears to me that making a post with a photo (or multiple photos) using the Blogger app only allows the photo to appear at the end of the post. That wasn't going to work for what I was writing.

Conveniently the Blogsy app does allow for images to be placed any place within the post. I guess my preference has been to use the Blogger app because it is somewhat more spartan. The very lack of bells and whistles that would keep me from doing what I wanted to do in this case is the thing that takes me to that app in general. And so I wrote the post using the Blogsy app.

I wrote the whole post and embedded the images where they went and everything was swell. Then, I went to publish and... nothing. The app would say it was prepping to post and then it would just stop. I tried over and over and got no place.

It turns out I was doing something wrong and the app did a lousy job of telling me I was doing it wrong.

Posting images to a blog is a fairly simple but specific purpose. None of the authoring tools I have used do it totally seamlessly. Were it not for the placement of the image I guess the blogger app is actually the most transparent. In the other cases, you have to identify and upload the image as a slightly separate process than uploading the post.

On Blogsy, for local photos - which is what I was using - you have to identify on online photo hosting site and then pre-load the image to that site as a prep step for writing the post. I had seen something on one of the dialog boxes that had me under the impression that they had automated that process in the last app update. So this time I just drag and dropped my photos where I wanted them and kept on writing.

I guess I read the notice wrong, because when I went to post it didn't. Eventually I deleted all the photos. Went back a step and uploaded them to Picasa and then re-inserted them into the post, went to publish and EUREKA! There it was.

So all is well that ends well and now the world can learn all about the history of tool storage in my life. Sometimes the #21stCenturyProblems make my head hurt.

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